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Gomphrena decumbens 'Little Grapes'

 
Gomphrena decumbens 'Little Grapes'
Newly purchased plant
globe amaranth; airy bachelor's buttons
Fading flowers in early January
Gomphrena decumbens 'Little Grapes'
New growth in May after megafreeze

Common name globe amaranth; airy bachelor's buttons
Family amaranthaceae
Life cycle perennial (Z8b-11)
Flowers purple
Size 36"
Light sun-part shade

Tiny bright-purple flowers by the hundreds, carried on a mess of wiry stems above mid-green pointy-tipped leaves. Reports of its hardiness vary from zone 8 to zone 9b; since it has reportedly lived for many years in a garden right around here, where the harshest winters dip to zone 8, I have high hopes of it surviving for me, too. I planted ours in May, and waited for a long time for flowers to appear – it didn't happen until mid-Autumn, and the event escaped my camera. So for now, you get a photo of the blooms past their prime, in early winter. By that time, the plant had already come through a few early-season frosts, without damage, but the worst was yet to come, in the form of record-breaking winter storm Uri in February 2021. Our dear plant seemed definitely dead after that, with no sign of life at all, until suddenly, in early May, there were some new leaves. It will be slow to re-establish, but I think we can say it's root-hardy to at least zone 8b.

In our garden, this plant grows in the following area: right fence border

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Last modified: May 08, 2021
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